WHAT’S BEING CLAIMED:
- A Ugandan mother who has given birth to 44 children — including four sets of twins, five sets of triplets and five quadruplets — has been banned by doctors from having additional children.
- Dubbed “the world’s most fertile woman”, Mariam Nabatanzi was sold into marriage at the age of 12 and gave birth to her first set of twins at age 13.
- The 39-year-old mother has a genetic predisposition to hyper-ovulate, meaning she releases multiple eggs in one cycle, increasing the chance of having multiple births.
A 39-year-old Ugandan woman who has been dubbed “the world’s most fertile woman” was banned by doctors to have more children.
Mariam Nabatanzi had her first set of twins a year after she was sold into marriage at the age of 12. She has given birth to 44 children— including four sets of twins, five sets of triplets and five quadruplets.
Nabatanzi, now a single mother after she was abandoned by her husband three years ago, was featured in an Al Jazeera mini-documentary earlier this year.
She works multiple jobs to support her 38 living children.
Though living in deep poverty, Nabatanzi wants her children to receive an education.
“Generally, I have tried to educate them. My dream is that my children go to school. They can lack anything (else), but they must go to school,” Nabatazni told Al Jazeera.
Dr. Chales Kiggundu, a gynecologist interviewed in the documentary, said Nabatanzi’s “case is genetic predisposition to hyper-ovulate — releasing multiple eggs in one cycle — which significantly increases the chance of having multiple births,”
Nabatanzi has tried birth control in the past, including using an IUD, however, the intra-uterine device made her so sick that she went into a coma.
According to a BET article, doctors have warned Nabatanzi that, given her condition, birth control pills could lead to health issues. Despite these challenges, Nabatanzi said she’s grateful for every single one of her kids.
Her eldest child, Ivan Kibuka, is now 23 and dropped out of high school because his mother could not afford it and she needed help with the growing family.
“Mum is overwhelmed, the work is crushing her, we help where we can, like in cooking and washing, but she still carries the whole burden for the family. I feel for her,” Ivan said.
“Feeling sorry for myself is something I dropped because I know these children are a gift from God that I have to treasure, so I try my best to fend for them,” she told BET.